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IPL 2014: RCB vs SRH - 5 key battles to watch out for

RCB and SRH haven't had the best of starts to IPL 2014. As the two face off, we look at the five key battles that will decide the game.

Chris Gayle

Chris Gayle returns to his favourite hunting ground

In today’s crucial match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Sunrisers Hyderabad, a thrilling battle between bat and ball is expected. The match will be played at the Chinnaswamy Stadium, the home ground of RCB.

So far, RCB and Sunrisers have played 5 matches each. Both have won 2 and lost 3 matches. The only minor difference is their run rate, which is stands at -0.207 for RCB and -0.642 for Hyderabad. Although this is immaterial at this stage, it could be crucial later on. Both the teams would like to win today’s match and strengthen their position.

Honestly, had Virat Kohli shown his splendid form in the last few matches along with Chris Gayle and Yuvraj Singh, the balance would be in the favor of RCB, but unfortunately the ground reality is not the same. Sunrisers Hydrabad, with their recent win over Mumbai Indians, have got back their confidence and everyone is expecting Shikhar Dhawan to strike big.

In any case, this is going to be a very interesting and unpredictable match – especially keeping in view the fact that the pitch is batting friendly with a pretty fast outfield and small boundaries. I would like to point out that Gayle had scored his 175 on this ground only. With a strong batting line consisting of Warner, Finch and Dhawan, Sunrisers have unlimited possibilities to explore today.

Most of the fans think that today’s clash is going to be a key battle among the following:

Virat Kohli vs Amit Mishra

We all know that Kohli has got an attacking batting style. But with his cool temperament and controlled bowling, Amit Mishra might be able to contain the run rate well. Especially, he could be very effective during the power play. So the mental strength and nerve control among these two could become a decider.

Dale Steyn vs Chris Gayle

Both these stars are equally capable of displaying their magic. Gayle has got an edge, especially on this ground. But Dale Steyn does possess that killing edge that is dangerous in any given situtation. Also, Steyn has a habit of putting everything into his bowling and he bowls in a rather fearless manner, which can prove to be a game changer.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar vs AB De Villiers

Bhuvneshwar Kumar has done quite well in this year’s IPL, managing to control the run rate well and picking up a few wickets at the same time. But AB De Villiers is not easy to contain and this could be a really fascinating match-up to watch.

Shikhar Dhawan vs Yuzvendra Chahal

The young lad Chahal has impressed a lot of fans with his decent performances. Shikhar Dhawan has not been in the best of form recently and he needs to tackle Chahal carefully. The youngster might once again prove his mettle here.

Aaron Finch vs Mitchell Starc

These two know each other very well, being team-mates for Australia. Finch has the ability to strike the ball hard and Starc has also proved that he can be a handy T20 bowler. It will be interesting to see whether Starc can manage to contain Finch.

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